The Rev. Dr. Nancy A. De Vries
The Rev. Dr. Nancy De Vries comes to us with a long history of pastoral ministry in the Presbyterian Church. Before becoming an interim minister,
Dr. De Vries served as the installed Senior Minister and Head of Staff of
the Presbyterian Church in Rye, New York, in suburban New York City. She
is completing a year’s term as interim pastor at the Jefferson Avenue Presbyterian Church in Detroit, Michigan. Prior to her current assignment, Nan served as Interim Pastor and Head of Staff at the First Presbyterian Church in Lincoln, Nebraska and has served similar positions in Fort Dodge and Davenport, Iowa, and in North Carolina. Nancy was University Chaplain, Pastor of University Church and taught religion on the faculty of Colgate University for 16 years, including courses in the Protestant Tradition in Europe and North America, Ethical Decision Making, Religion and Literature, and the American Immigrant Experience. Nancy also served as Chaplain at Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. More than25 of her students attended seminary and entered the ministry.
Earlier in her ministry Nancy served as Associate Minister in Denver, Colorado, Iowa, and Poughkeepsie, New York. She holds degrees from Princeton Theological Seminary in New Jersey and Hope College, in Holland, Michigan. She was granted the Doctor of Divinity degree by Coe College in 1996. She received certification in interim ministry at Montreat, North Carolina in 2005. Dr. De Vries was ordained to the Ministry of Word and Sacrament by the Presbytery of Hudson River in Poughkeepsie, New York on October 15, 1978.
Nancy is a child of the manse and of the Reformed Tradition. She was baptized by the Rev. Dr. Harrison Ray Anderson at the Fourth Presbyterian Church in Chicago, Illinois, and grew up in the home
of a Presbyterian parish pastor, the Rev. Dr. Calvin De Vries, in parishes in the Midwest and East Coast. Nancy’s mother was an early childhood educator. Nancy’s sister, the Rev. Dr. Janet M. De Vries is General Presbyter of Grace Presbytery in Texas, and her cousin, the Rev. Mark De Vries is a published consultant in youth ministry. Both of Nancy’s uncles were Presbyterian ministers. Nancy’s grandmother was a church musician and organist and Nan grew up with a love and knowledge of sacred music and beautiful and powerful liturgy.
She is knowledgeable in religious art, particularly Dutch and Flemish painting, and the Christian art of the Renaissance and Early Modern Period. Nancy has always been active in church governance, serving on the boards and committees of the denomination at every level. She is committed to interfaith goodwill and understanding and has taken a leadership role in communities she has served across the entirety of her ministry.
Nan is a warm, outgoing and inclusive person with a love for and passionate commitment to Christian faith, the Presbyterian Church, and parish ministry. She is a person of deep spirituality and is a
consistently caring and faithful pastor to persons in need. She
prays readily with people. Nan is a certified Stephen Leader. She enjoys writing liturgy, preaching and leading worship.
Nan has preached in many contexts, including a number of the outstanding collegiate pulpits of the nation: at Duke Chapel, Rockefeller Chapel at the University of Chicago, Memorial Chapel at Stanford University, and at Cornell University. Her sermons have been published in the books of William H. Willimon, now emeritus
Chaplain of Duke University, and she has also written and publish
ed Advent Devotions and scholarly articles.
Nan visits regularly in homes, hospitals and wherever needed. She delights in getting to know her parishioners and opens her home to them. Nan loves to cook and entertain, and hopes to be and will be pleased to be welcomed into your homes, as well. Nan has well-
honed administrative skills for parish ministry, and particularly
works to recruit, train, and strengthen the leadership of the Session and its committees. She is delighted to work closely with a team of staff colleagues. Nan has a deep commitment to mission, and its crucial outreach locally and internationally. She has worked successfully in every ministry she has had held to attract and receive new members of all ages and walks of life.
Nan loves to read, was an undergraduate English major, and loves to connect with people by telling a good story. She enjoys travel, museums, historic sites, and the culinary arts. She is working on a book, “Kitchen Christianity” which includes many of her recipes and her grandmother’s, prayers, short stories, poems, Biblical commentary, and humor. She has a ready sense of humor. Nan works out at a local fitness center virtually every day.
Dr. De Vries is honored and delighted to be chosen for Interim Pastor at the First Presbyterian Church of Mankato. She is drawn to its faithfulness in ministry, evident commitment to mission, the congregation’s love of worship, the outstanding program of music and the warmth and diversity of persons whom she has already met. Nan feels a warm and happy kinship with the members of the search committee, which is the Session, and is delighted that the group included a youth member! She looks forward with hope and pleasure to being with you soon, getting to know you, undertaking mission and ministry with and among you, and to shared faith and friendship.